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April 2015

 —  April is the month of the Lunar Festival as well as many other important dates in the Koreshan calendar. April 4th marks the birthday of Virginia Harmon Andrews, the wife of Dr. A.W.K. Andrews. She and her husband were one of the first followers of Dr. Teed. A visitor to this website sent us transcripts a few years ago, of letters that Dr. Andrews wrote to his wife Virginia’s mother, Margaret Harmon explaining why he and his wife had come to believe in Dr. Teed’s mission. [see AM-0153]

We also celebrate the marriage of Cyrus Teed and his wife, Fidelia M. Rowe, on April 13, 1859. Teed eventually left his wife, although he apparently never divorced her. There is some discussion about what exactly happened, but it is widely believed that Teed got caught up in his own beliefs and chose to become celibate. His wife is found in the 1860 census living with her parents and Arthur Teed, their only child, although it is said that Teed moved his family to New York City in 1862.

Teed’s parents, Jesse Sears Teed and Sarah Ann Tuttle also celebrate their wedding anniversary this month.

Finally, we celebrate the birthday of Annie Grace Glosson Ordway, known to the world as “Victoria Gratia“, the “Pre-Eminent” of the Koreshan Unity. Victoria was born in Boston, Massachusetts in 1844. She married a man named David Ordway, although most literature says her husband’s name was George. According to the 1870 and 1880 census, David and Annie were still married and living in Chicago. How long her marriage lasted is not known. She does appear to be living in Chicago as early as 1870. It was probably there that she first met Dr. Teed. After Teed’s death in 1908 she was drummed out of the Unity and she founded her own colony, eventually settling in St. Petersburg Florida. She married Dr. Charles Graves, the Koreshan Dentist, in 1909. She died in 1923. There were numerous attempts by some Koreshans to bring her back as head of the Unity, but they, of course, failed.

Categories: Monthly Feature.

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